The Veteran’s Farewell

As part of the ongoing exhibit of posters in Special Collections for Veterans Day, the students who created the exhibits also created entries for this blog. We will be posting these over the rest of the month of November.


1992.004.5.133 The Veteran’s Farewell….Enlist Now!

This poster was created by Frank Dadd in 1914 in London and printed by the Straker Brothers for the Parliamentary Recruiting Committee’s campaign. It depicts a veteran bidding farewell to a young soldier as other recruits set off in the background. The message is clearly for men to enlist, but the fact that the veteran says he is not young enough to go suggests this poster is partly directed at young men. Supporting this suggestion is all the young-looking men in the background. In addition to targeting young men, this poster is directed to the young men of each class. By including men wearing many styles of class related dress, such as a muffler and cloth cap or a bowler and nice suit, the poster indicates that all classes were required to enlist. This poster fulfilled its function, in that these clothing details would have been obvious to a society that was very conscious of class and the displays of it. Something unique about this poster is its style, which is very artistic and detailed in its representation. The image itself looks like a picture in a wooden frame placed on a green wall. This poster has also been reproduced and mentioned in books such as What did you do in the War, Daddy?.

Related Works:
• Your king & Country Need You to Maintain the Honour and Glory of the British Empire. Wood, Lawson. London: Parliament Recruiting Committee, 1914.
o Aside from also being published by the PRC, this poster is very similar in its message and subject in that it depicts a veteran shaking hands with a young soldier.
• At the front! Every fit Briton should join our brave men at the front. Enlist Now. Printed by E.S. & A. Robinson Ltd., Bristol. London: Parliamentary Recruiting Committee, 1915.
o Also asking young men to enlist, this poster is very similar to the style of “The Veteran’s Farewell”. Not only does it also looks like there is a painting hanging on a green wall, but its depiction is also very artistic and something not usually seen in most posters.
• Are you in this? Printed by Johnson, Riddle & Co., Ltd., London, S.E. Creator(s): Baden-Powell of Gilwell, Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, Baron. London: Parliamentary Recruiting Committee, 1917.
o This poster is somewhat similar in its message, but goes beyond targeting all the classes. It targets men, women, and children to help fight the war.

Hardie, Martin. War posters Issued by Belligerent and Neutral Nations. London A. & C. Black, ltd. 1920.
James, Aulich. Seduction or Instruction? : First World War Posters in Britain and Europe. Manchester; New York: Manchester University Press, 2007.
James, Aulich. War posters: Weapons of Mass Communication. London: Thames & Hudson, 2011.
James, Pearl. Picture This: World War I Posters and Visual Culture. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2009.
Kingsbury, Celia Malone. For home and Country: World War I Propaganda on the Home Front. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2010.
Paret, Peter. Persuasive Images : Posters of War and Revolution from the Hoover Institution Archives. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1992.
Stanley, Peter. What did you do in the War, Daddy?. Melbourne; New York: Oxford University Press, 1983.

Guest post by Jessica Provencher


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